Our town has started hosting a farmers’ market every Saturday morning throughout the summer. I bought a bunch of fresh beets and stuck them in the refrigerator and forgot about them for 2 weeks. I found them three days ago and decided to roast them and decide what to do with them later. I wrapped them in a heavy duty foil package and roasted them in a 400 degree oven and forgot about them again.
They should have roasted for an hour. I took them out of the oven two hours later. I didn’t even open the foil. I let them cool in the package on the counter for an hour and them put them in the frig until the next day. I got online to look for a recipe to include them in a salad. I found a good recipe on the Food Network website and prepared that one for dinner last night. We had strip steaks, cooked on the grill, fresh corn on the cob, potato salad, and the salad.
When beets are roasted, the beet skins slip right off easily. You don’t need a knife, peeler, or anything. Just pull and/or rub the skins right off. I keep a box of latex gloves in the kitchen under the sink for such things as peeling and cutting beets. (They are also great for mixing meatloaf, forming burgers, or dealing with raw chicken.I keep another box in the garage.) The purple beet juice can really stain your fingers. Wipe up any beet juice that drips on the counter or it will be stained too. Since the beets were overcooked, instead of dicing them as the recipe calls for, I decided to slice them thickly so that they wouldn’t fall apart. I marinated them in a few tablespoons of vinaigrette. A salad of lettuce, arugula, scallions, was tossed with more vinaigrette. The beets were then divided among the salad bowls atop the greens and the whole salad was garnished with grated goat cheese. It was delicious.
Here is the recipe, thanks to the Food Network. The only changes I made was to eliminate the walnuts and use half olive oil and half canola for the vinaigrette.
Beet Salad with Goat Cheese and Walnuts
Cook’s Note: The beets can be cooked and dressed up to 24 hours in advance, but wait until serving time to toss the greens.
6 medium beets, tops removed, leaving 1/4-inch of stems
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 garlic clove, pressed or minced
1/4 teaspoon salt
Generous seasoning freshly ground pepper
5 tablespoons olive oil
4 cups mixed greens, such as romaine, Boston, and green leaf lettuces, or mesclun
2 cups arugula, torn into small pieces
1 scallion, very thinly sliced
1/2 cup chilled crumbled goat cheese, such as Montrachet
1/4 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
Scrub the beets very well. Fill a 3-quart saucepan halfway with water and bring to a boil. Cook the beets until tender when pierced with sharp knife, about 45 to 60 minutes. Drain well and let cool. Slip the skins off the beets. Dice the beets and place in a bowl.
To make the dressing: whisk together the lemon juice, garlic, salt, pepper, and oil. Pour a few tablespoons of the dressing on the beets and toss.
Just before serving, combine the greens, arugula, and scallion in a large bowl. Pour on most of the remaining dressing and toss. Add more if needed.
Place the greens on 4 salad plates. Spoon on a mound of beets. Sprinkle with goat cheese and walnuts. Serve immediately.